Wednesday, September 05, 2012

A meticulous CON job

Oh no ! this is not a tutorial in a conning lesson or a 101 session on how to get conned.

Without spending time on a prelude, let me go ahead and tell you what I intend sharing.

We live close to the asia’s largest perishable goods market, Koyambedu, and thats a place we haunt occasionally on some weekends ( especially when we have the energy to walk and lug some weight around) for stocking up fresh veggies and fruits at home. With my son turning into a Vegetarian, that I have described here,  I have the responsibility of coming up with innovative ideas in veg preparations, to make sure he gets sufficeint nutrients that i feel he is missing by not eating non-veg food.

Hubby dear belongs to the energetic lot so I make sure I take an energy drink to keep up with his large striding leaps while walking.

So this was one of the weeks when I lost most of the energy in shopping for veggies and was not very energized to move on to the fruit market. Koyambedu is a large market which sprawls 100’s of acres and you really need a lot of energy to walk around the place and its definitely not the cleanest of places for a pleasant walk. However, since we were already there, thought of quickly picking up the fruits and I went to the first vendor who was at the entrance of the fruit market. The apples looked really good, and I had the luxury of choosing bright Red juicy apples and the vendor weighed them and put them in a black polythene cover and handed them over to me.

I imagined how those apples will contrast my new beige coloured table cloth that I had newly purchased and made a mental note of putting the apples in the oval brown wicker fruit basket in the centre of the table.

Picked some more stuff from the fruit market and landed home.

I get energized when I have to organize stuff ( wherever it is). Most of my friends have called me to come over to their homes to organize their wardrobes and cupboards after they saw mine. I remember how I used to organize Anita’s (my friend at the earlier org) desk at workplace whenever I went to her desk. I am working on my commissions for the activities :-) after which I plan to market my services to these people.

Organizing fruits is the easiest (very few gets into the fridge) and putting away the veggies takes a longer time and hence finished the veggeis first, all the while imagining how good those red apples are going to look on my new table cloth in a wicker basket. ( Silly me)
So finally I opened the black polythene cover and Lo and Behold, I see pale yellowish apples quite ugly looking and definitely not the ones I picked up . If I had picked up first quality apples this was like some third or fourth quality apples. I didn’t even want to put them on the table.

I was fuming that this guy cheated me in the broad daylight and I was wondering how this fellow managed to cheat me having seen him putting the apples in the black polythene cover and handing the very same cover to me. I did unleash my fury over this to my hubby dear who was equally surprised at the colour change of the apples, but I guess he left it at that. This was going on in my head and I was determined to figure out how this conning job worked.

I must have cribbed to him many times and Joe kind of sensed my purpose and tried distracting me by doing all the shopping himself for a couple of weeks in supermarkets around his workplace. So, I had to wait till I got back to Koyambedu a while later.  This time ( actually I wanted to go to the fruit market first but hubby dear gave me a look that would melt adamantium and so I tagged along with him to the veggie market ) so after all that veggie haul I stood there watching carefully how this conning drama unfolded.

Most of the vendors there blatantly follow this ritual of conning and I am sure many like me are victims to this act.

This is what they do. There are prepacked, neatly knotted (obviously with the low quality stuff) black coloured polythene covers that are kept down near the feet of the vendor and the vendor is sitting down in front of a small raised platform. When a customer comes in they are allowed to pick up the fruits they would the to buy and he carefully packs it in a black polythene cover and ties a skillfull knot and keeps it on his /her lap in the pretext of collecting money. He then takes money from the customer and instead of picking the polythene cover on the lap, (that is packed with the customers choice of fruits), he picks the prepacked cover quite naturally, that is quite close to his lap ( and cleverly hidden from the customer who is choosing the fruits). I was standing behind the vendor with hubby dear and was watching this. So I unraveled the mystery, and my blood was boiling. I wanted to alert that customer who just then picked it up and create a hue and cry and Joe literally dragged me out of that place saying that everyone there will gang up against us and we will be no match for their language or behavior.

Had to leave the place without fruits for the week and had to listen to Joe’s sermon on how I cannot afford to get impulsive in such situations.

I will never pick up anything from a vendor without cross checking if I really have what I have picked ( atleast in Koyambedu) If at all I get to go back there.

Conned but a good lesson learnt.


  1. aahaa...itha kandupudichirukeenga paarunga..unmailaye ungala paaratanum..oru kutti mystery novel rangeku irunthichi...inimay ungala paathu veetla pazham neeyamma gnaana pazham neeyamma nu paadavay maatanga :D somehow...aathi and ladies always end in trouble!!

    1. I had such a hearty laugh reading your comment Gils..... particularly liked the bibilical context you brought in :-)

      Hey gilsu why no postsu.. your fans are waiting..

  2. Getting conned is particularly infuriating. It isn't the quantum of loss that counts; its the fact that you have been fooled. Grrrrr. You should have yelled at the guy and created a scene - actually those who con are cowards at heart.

    Two hugely important areas of clarification !

    - how does a look that would melt adamantiun look like :) - photo photo !!
    - Will a lovely dinner do as a price for borrowing organising talents :):)

    1. Oh I still feel the same Ramesh. The best part is I can go back anytime and create a scene - I dont expect any of them to transform in the near future. Infact, almost all the vendors( both men and women and atleast around 20 of them in the vicinity) practice this diligently.

      Now over to the clarifications..

      Ah... I have never thot of photographing him when he gives that look, but thats a great idea. will try :-) I have to pick up a cam that does not melt. even adamantium melts you see.. :-)

      I would love to meet you Ramesh. and a lovely dinner at that, what more can i ask for? whatever paltry organising skills i have is all yours for keeps.

  3. apdiye me the putting kerchief for a seat at the dinner table :D:D:D perusa ethuvum venaam..rendu unlimited andhra meals for snacks wl do

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